If your child is suffering the consequences of a birth injury caused by a doctor’s negligence, contacting an experienced attorney can be an important step to take.
The licensed attorneys at Jay Trucks and Associates are here to review your situation in a free consultation to determine if you may be eligible for compensation for medical expenses and other damages. We have more than 150 years of combined experience recovering more than $500 million on behalf of our clients. Our founder Jay Trucks is a member of the Michigan Trial Lawyers Association.
Our Clare birth injury attorneys understand how difficult it can be to deal with a birth injury, from the financial challenges to the physical challenges children with birth injuries may face each day.
Your consultation is not only free, but confidential, and there is no obligation for you to take legal action if you have a valid case. Our attorneys do not receive payment unless our clients are compensated.
Call today with your legal questions. We are here to help. (800) 762-8623
Can I File a Claim After a Birth Injury?
Proving an injury resulted from medical malpractice can be very complicated. Our Clare birth injury lawyers need to learn more about your child’s injury and the problems during the pregnancy, labor or delivery.
For example, we need to try to determine if doctors failed to monitor the baby for signs of distress or take appropriate action when they knew or should have known about a problem. We also need to connect the doctor’s action or lack of action directly to your child’s injury. We must prove the injury would have been avoided if not for the doctor’s malpractice.
If you believe you have a case, or are unsure one way or the other, you should strongly consider meeting with our experienced attorneys. The consultation with our lawyers is a free and you do not have to hire our firm if we determine you may have a case. There is no risk to you.
We are here to answer your questions. (800) 762-8623
What Might a Birth Injury Case Be Worth?
Birth injuries can be very expensive to treat and manage. Fortunately, you may be able to obtain compensation for medical and treatment expenses over the course of your child’s life.
If your child suffered a brain injury and now has cerebral palsy, you may be able to recover compensation for physical, speech and occupational therapy, along with mobility aids (walkers, crutches, etc.) and the cost of doctor’s appointments.
If your child needs psychological counseling, surgery, prescription medication, or other forms of medical treatment, the cost may be covered by your jury verdict or settlement award.
Non-economic damages may also be available, including pain and suffering, disability and disfigurement.
Unfortunately, Michigan has a cap on non-economic damages in medical malpractice cases. For cases filed in 2020 the cap is $495,700, but it increases each year due to inflation.
However, there is a higher cap when the victim suffers one of the following injuries:
- Brain or spinal cord injury that causes hemiplegia, paraplegia or quadriplegia that results in permanent functional loss of one or more limbs
- Permanent impairment of cognitive capacity making the victim unable to make independent life decisions and independently perform activities of normal, daily living
- Permanent loss or damage to a reproductive organ making the victim unable to procreate
The cap on damages for these injuries is $842,500 for claims filed in 2020.
What is Michigan’s Deadline for Filing a Birth Injury Claim?
Generally, you have two years from the date of the injury to file a medical malpractice claim in Michigan. However, if those two years pass before you discover the injury, you have six months from the date you discover the injury to file a claim. That said, all claims must be filed within six years of the date of malpractice.
If you do not file a claim before the deadline passes, you may lose the right to do so.
Call Jay Truck and Associates today for a free consultation to discuss the deadline for your claim. (800) 762-8623.
Defining a Birth Injury
Birth injuries are not the same as birth defects. Birth defects happen while the baby is in the womb and they cannot be caused by the doctor’s action or inaction.
However, birth injuries happen during labor or delivery of the child. They are often caused by the doctor’s negligence. Examples of these injuries may include:
- Spinal cord injuries
- Lack of oxygen
- Bleeding in the brain
- Broken collarbone
- Nerve damage in the neck or shoulder
- Damage to facial nerves
- Swelling of the scalp
- Breathing difficulties
How Quickly Can a Birth Injury Happen?
It can take a matter of minutes for your child to suffer a birth injury that could affect him or her for the rest of his or her life. For instance, if a doctor waits just a little too long to decide to do a C-section, it may already be too late.
That is why doctors are legally required to provide care that meets accepted standards in the medical community that are designed to keep patients safe.
Factors That Increase the Chances of a Birth Injury
Doctors need to diagnose and be aware of a variety of factors that may increase the likelihood of a difficult birth and potential birth injury, such as the size of the infant. (Babies weighing more than eight pounds and 13 ounces could be considered large.)
Other risk factors for birth injuries may include:
- Prolonged or difficult labor
- Premature birth, particularly babies born before 37 weeks
- Infant being positioned feet first instead of head-first
- The mother’s pelvis being smaller than the baby’s head
- Excessive pulling during the delivery
- Use of forceps or vacuum extractors to help pull the baby out of the birth canal
When doctors do not diagnose these issues, prepare for them and take appropriate action to protect the health and safety of the baby, there may be grounds for a birth injury claim.
Contact our firm today to set up a free consultation with a Clare birth injury attorney. (800) 762-8623
How Medical Negligence Can Cause Birth Injuries
There are many examples of medical negligence that could lead to birth injuries, such as:
- Failing to do a C-section when necessary, or waiting too long to do the procedure
- Failing to carefully monitor the mother and her baby for signs of distress
- Failing to provide treatment for infections in the mother
- Being unprepared for a difficult birth
- Not using caution when using delivery tools
- Prescribing medication to the mother that causes side effects for the fetus
If you think negligence was the cause of your child’s injuries, you should consider talking to a licensed attorney about your options.
Medical Conditions That May Be Caused by Injuries During Birth
There are many birth injuries that may heal within a matter of days or weeks, such as a broken collarbone. However, other birth injuries may have a lifetime of consequences for children and their families. These may include:
- Cerebral palsy – This is a condition that can cause a variety of physical and cognitive difficulties. Children often have trouble walking, controlling their movements, speaking and learning.
- Brachial plexus injuries – This refers to damage to the cluster of nerves in the shoulder. This often occurs when the baby’s shoulder is pulled too hard during delivery. Examples of brachial plexus injuries include Erb’s palsy and Klumpke’s palsy. Children may have permanent damage that limits movement and use of one arm.
- Spinal cord injuries – Spinal cord damage is often permanent and results in permanent mobility limitations.
- Intra-abdominal birth injuries – These injuries are not very common and could include damage to internal organs. This can be particularly bad if the liver is the organ that sustains damage.
Contact a Clare Birth Injury Attorney for a Free Consultation
During this difficult time, it is important to talk to a qualified attorney about possible legal options. Managing a birth injury can take a tremendous toll, physically, emotionally and financially, and taking legal action may allow you to recover compensation for these damages.
The trusted attorneys at Jay Trucks and Associates have more than 150 years of combined experience representing Michigan injury victims, from Clare to Saginaw, Lansing, Grand Rapids, Cadillac, Kalamazoo, Battle Creek and the cities in between.
Our firm can be reached anytime, 24/7. Contact us to schedule you free, no-obligation legal consultation and learn more about how we may be able to help you. If you hire us, there are no upfront fees and no fees period unless you are compensated.
Our office is located at 600 Pine Street, just a block away from MidMichigan Medical Center – Clare.
Jay Truck and Associates: (800) 762-8623.